Two Weber State University officers seriously injured on I-15 SB
SALT LAKE CITY — Two Weber State University officers have been seriously injured after pulling to the side of southbound I-15. The officers were responding to an accident involving two cars.
Weber State officers seriously injured
Investigators say the officers stopped to help after seeing a car partially blocking the southbound HOV lane near 700 South in Salt Lake City. A third car reportedly pushed one of the involved cars into the officers.
Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Cameron Roden says both officers’ injuries are serious, but non-life-threatening. The crash and the injury to officers resulted in heavy delays for several hours.
Hundreds of crashes
Wednesday, Dec. 15 saw over 150 crashes after a night of heavy snowfall between midnight and 11:00 a.m. Roden says. However, he says they worked on roughly 200 crashes since the snow started falling.
So far your State Troopers have handled 158 crashes statewide! They have helped 517 vehicles that have slid off the roadway or needed other help to get them on their way.
Although the sun is out, please continue to drive slow. Roads are still wet and still being cleared. pic.twitter.com/zEDyvpuxHP
— Utah Highway Patrol (@UTHighwayPatrol) December 15, 2021
Roden says high speeds are one of the most common factors behind crashes in bad weather. He says too many drivers are over-confident in the snow.
“They may be from here. They may have spent a lot of winters here and they’ve driven in these conditions before,” he says.
Meteorologists say another storm, albeit a weaker one, is in the forecast for Thursday morning, and Roden worries we could see more of the same when it comes to traffic accidents.
He says, “For the most part, a lot of people are slowing down and adjusting to those conditions, but you still have those few that just go sailing by everybody else.”
Great for the snowpack
Recent storms passing over the Wasatch Front have been a big boost to the state’s snowpack. National Weather Service Hydrologist Glen Merrill says the snowpack went from 39 percent of normal to almost 75 percent within the past ten days. He says we would normally had roughly 3.9 inches of snow-water equivalent in our mountains, and now, we have about three inches.
However, he says a lot of powder on the slopes doesn’t always translate into a lot of water in the reservoirs. Merrill explained just how much water comes from storms like this.
“It’s on average, about one inch of snow-water equivalent,” he says.
Usually, by the beginning of April, we have roughly 14 inches of water in our mountains. So, Merrill says we need 11 more storms to pass over Utah.
“We’ve got a long ways to go to build up a normal volume of water in the snowpack. We still have about 11 to 12 inches to accumulate, between now and then,” according to Merrill.
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